Majority Leader Bill Frist caved to Minority Leader Harry Reid’s demands and postponed action on repealing the death tax this week.
It was a wise PR move on Frist’s part—not to appear disinterested in hurricane relief—but it’s an issue conservatives should demand gets attention sooner rather than later. There’s no excuse letting it take a back seat once the SCOTUS hearings and appropriations bills are completed.
Sen. Jon Kyl, who was the lead sponsor of the repeal, issued the following statement:
"I had eagerly anticipated a vote on repealing the death tax as soon as possible upon the Senate’s return from the August recess. However, the President and the Majority Leader have shifted their immediate legislative priorities in the wake of both Hurricane Katrina and the death of Chief Justice Rehnquist, which is appropriate and completely understandable. The hearings for John Roberts will now begin next Monday; and the full Senate will begin consideration of appropriations bills, some of which will deal with funding for the Gulf coast disaster.
"I remain committed to permanent death tax relief and look forward to taking up the matter on the Senate floor at the absolutely earliest reasonable opportunity."